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Animatrix: Final Flight of the Osiris: Its all in the Eyes
Large Image Display:Animatrix: Final Flight of the Osiris: Its all in the Eyes

This frame is from the widescreen version of ?Final Flight of the Osiris?, one of the Animatrix animated shorts. It has been considerably scaled back from the original material.

Take a look at the face in this frame. Notice the eyes, and how they glimmer, offering a window onto the soul. It cannot be stated often enough, that one of the key aspects of overcoming the uncanny valley is in the eyes.

It does not matter how great your control of facial animation is. It does not matter how accurately you texturemap and layer the face, or how accurately you simulate colouration changes, pocks, freckles, subtle disfigurations. Once those eyes open and look straight at the viewer, if they appear dead, devoid of life, you have lost the battle.

Yes, it is much more processor intensive to treat the eyes of every avatar as reflective surfaces ? worse, curved reflective surfaces, animated irises shifting subtly frame by frame. However, if this can be achieved in your system, you will have created eyes that peer into the soul ? you will have created believable, convincing realism, and crossed one of the largest humps in the uncanny valley.

Link: Final Flight of the Osiris

Link: Avatars and Personification